Shelton P&Z opposes plan to build 206 apartments

Photo of Brian Gioiele
Shelton Parrot Associates’ plans for a residential development at 1 Parrot Drive.

Shelton Parrot Associates’ plans for a residential development at 1 Parrot Drive.

Shelton Parrot Associates / Contributed photo

SHELTON — Losing light industrial space and increasing traffic concerns have Planning and Zoning commissioners opposed to construction of 206 residential units at 1 Parrot Drive.

The commission unanimously agreed last week to have zoning consultant Anthony Panico prepare a resolution, denying Shelton Parrot Associates’ request for a Planned Development District at the Parrot Drive location — present home to structures suited for light industrial.

The resolution will be presented at a future commission meeting, when commissioners will formally vote on the proposal.

Commission Chairwoman Virginia Harger said the site is “the wrong place” for this proposed development.

Harger cited the potential traffic congestion that would be caused by adding this many apartments so close to Fountain Square, which sits at the corner of Bridgeport Avenue and Parrot Drive. She also said she did not want to “short-change” Shelton by removing what could be a perfect site for light industrial business opportunities.

"Shelton should be thinking strategically about our plan for development and future land uses that help the city and its residents,” commissioner Jimmy Tickey said in voicing his opposition.

“Other towns such as Trumbull, Stratford, North Haven, Middletown have led the way to develop their light industrial land with distribution centers, which have only become more in-demand during COVID-19,” Tickey added. “We should not rush to develop 200 apartments on Bridgeport Avenue when we can move forward on a development that creates jobs and better suits Shelton.”

Tickey said anyone who says there is no need for light industrial is “not paying attention to the current economic trends, highlighted by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Shelton Parrot Associates had sought to add 206 apartments to 1 Parrot Drive, an 8-acre property that now hosts a 101,500-square-foot industrial building and adjacent parking lot.

According to the application, the proposed residential development, called Elevate at Shelton, would sit in the existing parking area and a portion of the industrial building after about 51,000 square feet — about a third of the building — would be demolished.

Plans call for two residential buildings to be built in the space. The new development would consist of 47,100 square feet of existing industrial space, 206 new residential apartments and 411 total parking spaces.

The development could be performed in phases, according to the application, and the property divided into separate parcels “provided reciprocal easements for access and utilities and maintenance agreements for the entire parcel are in place.”

The proposed site is off Parrot Drive northwest of Bridgeport Avenue.

In place of the demolished industrial space, two multilevel residential buildings would be built with footprints of approximately 26,500 and 34,000 square feet, respectively. The two buildings would each contain four levels above grade.

Parking spaces would be placed on existing and new surface parking and new below-grade parking beneath each of the proposed residential buildings would be added. The surface spaces would be shared between the residential and industrial land uses.